Service Provider Transformation
Juniper Employee , Juniper Employee Juniper Employee
Service Provider Transformation
Juniper Provides Innovative End-to-End Packet-Optical Solutions with IPLC
Aug 16, 2016

In David Song’s last blog, he talked about Juniper’s new baby ILA (ILA). Of course it would be unfair not to mention its sibling, the IPLC. This is not for fear of being sided in sibling rivalry, as IPLC and ILA are not rivals in any sense. They are close friends and complement each other. They were unveiled by Juniper at the same time and are often deployed in the same packet-optical network. Together with Juniper’s coherent DWDM linecards such as PTX-5-100G-WDM PIC or MIC3-100G-DWDM MIC (Steven Keck's "Plenty to See @OFC"), they provide Juniper’s customers with innovative end-to-end packet-optical solutions.


The IPLC (Integrated Photonics Line Card) is a linecard that plugs into Juniper's PTX3000 packet optical chassis. It is a 32-channel mux/demux with integrated 2D‑ROADM (Reconfigurable Optical Add/Drop Multiplexer) on a blade. The IPLC can pair with the IPLC-E (IPLC-Expansion) to support up to 64-channel add/drop. IPLC and IPLC-E can be plugged into any PTX3000 FPC or PIC slot.


The following picture shows the IPLC, or PTX-IPLC-B-32 to be more precise. It has one Line-In/Out port towards the optical network, one pass-through port for the optical by-pass in 2D‑ROADM configuration to connect to a second IPLC, one expansion port to connect to the IPLC-E, and 32 DWDM channel add/drop ports. The line port supports fiber loss in the range from 0 to 35dB thanks to a state-of-the-art switchable-gain integrated optical amplifier inside the card.




The expansion card or PTX-IPLC-E-32, shown in the picture below, is a passive optical mux/demux card for adding an extra 32-channel add/drop capacity to the IPLC, for a total of 64 channel add/drop. IPLC‑E’s 32 channels are interleaved with IPLC’s 32 channels, so IPLC plus IPLC-E essentially bring in 50GHz spacing. The IPLC-E has an expansion port to connect to IPLC, plus 32 DWDM channel add/drop ports. The IPLC will automatically take care of channel power equalization for all the 64 channels.




The following diagram illustrates how the separated packet network and optical network integrate into a packet-optical network (bottom diagram) and get rid of the transponder shelf with the use of the IPLC.




The combined features of the IPLC in the PTX3000 chassis together with the Juniper ILAs provide the following benefits to customers:


  • Provide full packet-optical integration with a single vendor, single operative system, and single configuration
  • Remove external optical shelves otherwise needed for the management of the optical transport network
  • Operate and maintain only one network – the packet-optical network
  • Simplify operation on top of a packet centric solution via optical plug-n-play
  • Reduce CAPEX and OPEX

The previous example was based on the simplest network architecture, a point-to-point link. Even though this is a very relevant use case for most of our customers, it is important to highlight the fact that the IPLC is packed with state of the art technology and can even go beyond point-to-point connectivity with the 2D‑ROADM mode. The next picture shows an example of a 3-node network where the central node employs the 2D-ROADM mode.




In this network there is a direct optical connection between transponders of the same colors. As in the point-to-point case, we can establish connectivity between transponders located in adjacent nodes (e.g the yellow and red ones). On top of that, the wavelength used by the blue transponders can pass through the middle node without the need for an O/E/O conversion, and thus save an expensive pair of interfaces on that node. This is the power of the 2D-ROADM, which can be used in any ring topology as well. This innovative design brings huge savings to Juniper’s customers!


As a Chinese proverb puts it: “Brothers and sisters are as close as hands and feet.” Same is true for ILA and IPLC. They work closely in Juniper’s packet-optical solutions and bring huge value to Juniper’s customers.


Authors: David Song, Massimiliano Salsi, Essam Tony Keddis.